After the poor performance against Turkey on Saturday, Netherlands improved greatly to see off Spain 2-0 at the Amsterdam Arena and ease the pressure on Guus Hiddink.

de vrij v spaGuus Hiddink came under scrutiny after the 1-1 draw with Turkey on Saturday which left Netherlands chances of qualifying for the European Championships in the balance, and the coach responded by making several changes to the side for the rematch of the 5-1 hammering at the World Cup.

Out went Jasper Cillessen, Gregory van der Wiel, Nigel de Jong, Georginio Wijnaldum and Ibrahim Afellay, and in came Kenneth Vermeer, Jetro Willems, Daryl Janmaat, Davy Klaassen, and Luciano Narsingh. The changes had an instant impact on the side with Netherlands passing the ball around with confidence in the early stages.

Memphis Depay forced David de Gea into an early save before the deadlock was broken in the 12th minute, as a fine cross from Wesley Sneijder was headed into the bottom corner by Stefan de Vrij. The midfielder providing an assist on his 113th cap, which sees him overtake Frank de Boer as Netherlands all time appearances for an outfield player.

Three minutes after the opening goal it was 2-0. Memphis Depay showed skills on the left before passing to Jetro Willems in the box, and after the PSV left back set up Davy Klaassen to fire straight at De Gea, the Ajax midfielder prodded in the rebound.

Spain came into the game after the 2nd goal, but they found a determined Dutch defence in their way, and when Pedro was gifted an opportunity after a slip by Martins Indi, Kenneth Vermeer was on hand to deny the visitors. Early in the second half Bruno Martins Indi sent a header into the ground and over the bar from a few yards out, while De Gea parried a vicious Depay effort. At the other end Gerard Pique struck a free kick straight at Vermeer, while Vitolo shot wide, and David Silva had a goal chalked off by the linesman for offside.

Depay, who had an excellent game on the left wing, set up Georginio Wijnaldum late on with an excellent disguised pass, but his PSV teammate smashed into the side netting with the goal gaping. Netherlands defence comfortably held on for the victory which will save Guus Hiddink his job for now, but the coach needs to make sure he takes this confidence into the qualifier against Latvia in June.

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